Fahad bin Mohammed al-Attiyah, Qatar’s ambassador to Russia, has said that Russia is playing a very important and constructive role in resolving the Gulf crisis. He also revealed that Russia refused to take a biased stand against Qatar, in spite of the pressure from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
“Russia has been following the principle of ‘positive neutrality’ that advocates constructive dialogue to find solutions to disagreement between parties,” he told.
“Some countries, a very few of them, were blackmailed into severing ties with Qatar but the rest of the world has withstood pressure and called for talks to solve the dispute,” the envoy said.
Speaking about the Russian minister’s trip to the Middle East, he said that the visit is aimed at strengthening bilateral relations between the two nations and also to resolve the crisis.
“Lavrov has expressed Russian support for Kuwaiti mediation, which calls for dialogue to end the dispute and he has urged the siege countries to pursue talks without further violating international rules.” According to al-Attiyah, the message coming out of the visit of the Russian foreign minister ‘is loud and clear’ to Qatar’s neighbours.
“They have to eschew the path of confrontation and follow the way of reconciliation. The international community is giving them a chance to solve this problem peacefully through dialogue; if they fail, then the rest of the world will initiate steps to resolve the matter through internationally accepted principles of peaceful co-existence,” he added.
The envoy also said that the blockade on Qatar is approaching 100 days. “But Qatar is moving ahead steadily; rather it has strengthened international relations and built new alliances. The world is a far bigger place than the four countries (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE and Egypt). Qatar will not compromise on its territorial integrity and sovereignty. Qatar will continue to strive for a brighter, safer future for its people,” he added.